West Ham boss Bilic backs Carroll

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West Ham boss Slaven Bilic says Andy Carroll can exploit Liverpool’s defence when the two sides meet on Saturday.

The Reds have conceded 15 goals in their five away games in the Premier League this season, ahead of their visit to the London Stadium.

Carroll, who played 58 times for Liverpool, is yet to score this season but Bilic believes his aerial ability will unsettle his former side’s back four – as he did when scoring against them in January 2016.

“Andy is definitely one of our players who can hurt them,” Bilic told a pre-match media conference.

“They are a very good team who play offensive football, which can leave them a little open at the back.

“We have analysed them and it’s not only Spurs [in a 4-1 win] that have exploited that. If you have a good transition and players in the right positions you can hurt them.”

Bilic has injuries in defence to contend with and may have to include some of the club’s highly-rated youngsters in his matchday squad.

Declan Rice, 18, has played in five of the Hammers’ 10 Premier League games and Bilic says others could follow in his footsteps – if the club’s league position improves.

“Declan is becoming a very important player for West Ham,” he said.

“Toni Martinez is scoring goals but at the moment we have three strikers in good form.

“I like Nathan Holland, I rate him. Sead Haksabanovic as well.

“The best way to put the young players in is in a very comfortable situation. The experienced players have to get us through the situation and then we can look at the young players.”




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